Do I Have POTS Syndrome Quiz: Understanding Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS)

Medically Reviewed By Dr. Robert Stevens

Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) is a chronic health condition that significantly affects the autonomic nervous system, particularly impacting heart rate and blood pressure regulation. 

This blog post delves into the symptoms, potential triggers, and management options for POTS, complemented by a quiz designed to help you if you've found yourself asking, "Do I have POTS Syndrome?"

At re-origin, we’ve helped hundreds of people with chronic conditions manage and decrease symptoms with brain retraining. By rewiring your brain’s response to symptoms, you may reduce your stress response, calm your nervous system, and induce healing! If you are interested in hearing more, sign up for a free info call today.

Do I Have POTS Syndrome? Quiz

This quiz is designed to help you identify potential symptoms of POTS. We recommend you reflect on your typical health experiences when answering:

  1. When standing, do you feel an increased heart rate that seems excessive?
  2. Do you experience symptoms like brain fog, trouble focusing, or excessive sweating related to your body’s position (laying flat, standing, sitting)?
  3. Do the above symptoms worsen after a hot bath, shower, or being in a warm environment?
  4. Does your doctor note significant fluctuations when taking your blood pressure if you are in different positions?
  5. Have changes like increased salt intake or better hydration had a positive impact on the above symptoms?
  6. Do you often feel lightheaded or experience chest pain during routine activities?
  7. Have you undergone a tilt table test for POTS diagnosis, and what were the results?

If you answered "Yes" to several of these questions, it might be beneficial to consult with a healthcare provider for a thorough evaluation for POTS. 

Understanding POTS Syndrome: Symptoms and Diagnosis

Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome, commonly referred to as POTS, is part of a group of disorders under the umbrella of orthostatic intolerance. The primary symptom used to describe POTS is an excessively increased heart rate upon standing due to blood pressure regulation issues; it is often accompanied by other symptoms related to standing upright, such as lightheadedness, dizziness, brain fog, and trouble focusing.1 Blood pressure issues and heart rate abnormalities are crucial indicators in a POTS diagnosis, often assessed through a standing test or head-up tilt table test.2

What are the Causes and Symptoms of Postural Tachycardia Syndrome?

POTS Syndrome is a complex disorder that can stem from a variety of underlying causes and presents with a broad range of symptoms. Here is a detailed look at the causes and symptoms of POTS using the information from cited resources:

Causes of POTS

POTS can develop due to several different underlying factors, including:

  • Autoimmune Disorders: Some evidence suggests that POTS may be linked to autoimmune conditions, where the body's immune system mistakenly attacks its own tissues, potentially affecting the nervous system.1
  • Genetic Predisposition: There may be a hereditary component to POTS, indicating that genetic factors could play a role in its development.3
  • Viral Infections: The onset of POTS has been frequently associated with viral infections, which can trigger autoimmune responses or directly impact autonomic nervous system function.2
  • Physical Deconditioning: Extended periods of bed rest or inactivity can lead to deconditioning, which may precipitate or exacerbate the symptoms of POTS.
  • Pregnancy: Changes during pregnancy can initiate POTS, possibly due to hormonal changes and changes in blood volume.2

Symptoms of POTS

The symptoms of POTS are primarily related to the body's inability to properly regulate blood flow and blood pressure when moving from a reclining to a standing position. Common symptoms include:

  • Tachycardia: An abnormally rapid heart rate increase upon standing—by at least 30 beats per minute for adults or 40 beats per minute in adolescents—is the hallmark symptom of POTS.1
  • Orthostatic Intolerance: Symptoms that worsen with standing, such as lightheadedness, dizziness, and fainting.3
  • Fatigue: Chronic, often debilitating fatigue that does not resolve with rest.
  • Brain Fog: Cognitive impairments such as trouble concentrating and confusion, are often reported by patients with POTS.
  • Palpitations: A sensation of feeling one’s own heartbeat, which can be uncomfortable and distressing.
  • Gastrointestinal Issues: Symptoms such as nausea, abdominal pain, and irritable bowel syndrome are commonly reported.1
  • Excessive Sweating: There can be abnormalities in sweating, either too much or too little.
  • Tremors: Shaking or trembling, particularly when in the upright position.
  • Temperature Regulation Issues: Issues with feeling too hot or too cold. These symptoms and causes highlight the complexity of POTS and the importance of a comprehensive approach to diagnosis and treatment to manage this condition effectively.

What can trigger a POTS episode?

POTS patients frequently experience episodes that can be triggered by factors like prolonged standing, warm environments, and physical exertion. 

How long does a POTS flare-up last?

The duration of flare-ups in people with Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS)  varies much. These episodes, characterized by exacerbated orthostatic symptoms such as an increase in heart rate and lightheadedness, may last from a few minutes to several hours. In some cases, especially when triggers are not quickly addressed, symptoms may persist for days. The variability largely depends on an individual’s health, the specific triggers involved, and the effectiveness of management strategies.2

Factors Influencing Flare Duration

Several factors can influence the length and severity of POTS flares:

  • Hydration and Salt Intake: Proper hydration and proper salt intake can help maintain blood volume, which is crucial for stabilizing blood pressure and heart rate when standing. This management strategy is essential to reduce POTS symptoms and shorten the duration of flare-ups.1
  • Treatment Efficacy: The success of both medical and non-medical treatments can affect how quickly symptoms are alleviated. Implementing strategies like wearing compression stockings to support blood vessels and engaging in appropriate exercises can stabilize the condition more swiftly.
  • Response to Initial Symptoms: How promptly individuals respond to the onset of symptoms by taking actions such as lying down, cooling down, or hydrating can also impact flare duration.

How can I fix my POTS naturally?

Natural management strategies for treating POTS focus on lifestyle adjustments aimed at stabilizing blood flow and improving autonomic nervous system function. Key strategies include:

  • Brain Retraining
  • Increasing Fluid and Salt Intake
  • Physical Therapy and Structured Exercise
  • Compression Garments
  • Diet and Supplements

Non-Medicinal Treatments for POTS

Non-medicinal treatments for Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) focus on lifestyle modifications and physical interventions that help manage and alleviate the symptoms associated with this autonomic disorder. These interventions are particularly important as they offer alternatives or complements to pharmacological treatments, addressing the symptoms at their physiological root without the potential side effects of medications.

Brain Retraining Programs

Brain retraining, or self-directed neuroplasticity, is emerging as a potentially useful tool in treating POTS, particularly in cases where autonomic nervous system dysfunction plays a significant role in worsening symptoms. Through consistent practice, these methods can help rewire the brain's responses to stress and positional changes, potentially improving the regulation of autonomic functions. Cognitive-behavioral approaches and mindfulness practices also fall under this category, helping patients manage the anxiety and stress that can exacerbate POTS symptoms.

Increased Salt and Fluid Intake

One of the foundational non-medicinal strategies for managing POTS involves increasing salt and fluid intake. This approach aims to expand blood volume, which can be significantly lower in POTS patients. An increased blood volume helps maintain blood pressure and reduce heart rate increments upon standing, thereby lessening  the orthostatic intolerance that characterizes POTS. Patients are often advised to consume a high-sodium diet, coupled with the intake of additional fluids to ensure hydration. This can be particularly effective in types of POTS where hypovolemia (low blood volume) is present.2

Physical Therapy and Structured Exercise

Physical therapy and a structured exercise program are critical components in treating POTS, especially given the direct impact of physical conditioning on cardiovascular and autonomic nervous system functioning. Starting with recumbent or horizontal exercises—such as rowing, swimming, or recumbent bicycling—helps the body readjust without the immediate challenge of gravity. Gradually, as tolerance develops, more upright exercises can be incorporated. Regular physical activity helps improve blood flow, strengthen the heart, and enhance the body's ability to regulate blood pressure, and stabilize heart rate during positional changes.1

Compression Garments

Wearing compression stockings or garments is another effective non-medical treatment. These garments help by exerting pressure on the legs, promoting blood flow back to the heart, and reducing the amount of blood that pools in the lower extremities. This can significantly help with heart rate and blood pressure stabilization to decrease symptoms like lightheadedness and fainting upon standing.

Enhance Your Quality of Life by Understanding and Managing POTS Symptoms

Understanding and managing Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome involves recognizing the symptoms, triggers, and effective treatments that can significantly enhance your quality of life. If you believe you might have POTS, reach out to your primary care physician for professional advice and a personalized management plan. Remember, effective management can help most patients achieve a better quality of life despite the challenges of this disorder.

At re-origin, we help you reclaim your health by rewiring your brain. By changing the way you respond to your POTS symptoms, you can slowly rewire your nervous system responses, allowing your brain to feel safe and decreasing the intensity of symptoms. If you'd like to learn more about the re-origin program, schedule a free info call.


What is the difference between orthostatic intolerance and POTS?

Orthostatic intolerance (OI) is a broad term used to describe symptoms that occur when standing, typically caused by a decrease in blood flow to the brain during this positional change. Symptoms can include dizziness, lightheadedness, palpitations, trembling, and feelings of weakness or fatigue. Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS), a subset of orthostatic intolerance, is specifically characterized by a significant increase in heart rate of at least 30 beats per minute within ten minutes of standing in adults (or over 40 beats per minute in adolescents and young adults), without a significant drop in blood pressure. POTS patients also experience symptoms like brain fog, headaches, and fatigue, which are less pronounced in other forms of OI.1

What vitamins help with POTS?

While there are no specific vitamins that cure POTS, certain supplements can help alleviate symptoms by supporting overall cardiovascular and nervous system health. Magnesium is often recommended because it assists in muscle and nerve function and can help regulate heart rate. Some patients may benefit from increased salt and fluid intake to raise blood volume, which can be supported by electrolyte supplements. Vitamins such as B complex (especially B1 and B12) can support energy production and neurological functions. Always consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen to ensure these are appropriate based on individual health needs.1

Do you develop POTS or are you born with it?

POTS is not generally considered a congenital condition; instead, it develops due to a combination of environmental and genetic factors. Many cases of POTS begin after a viral infection, pregnancy, surgery, or trauma, which suggests a significant environmental trigger. There may be a genetic predisposition in some individuals, as suggested by the occurrence of POTS in multiple members of the same family or its association with other genetic conditions like Ehlers-Danlos syndrome or autoimmune disorders.2

Can you treat POTS without medication?

Yes, many patients manage their POTS symptoms successfully without medication. Non-pharmacological treatments include increasing salt and fluid intake to boost blood volume, wearing compression stockings to improve blood flow, engaging in a supervised and gradual physical conditioning program to strengthen the cardiovascular system, and implementing dietary changes such as small, frequent meals to avoid large shifts in blood volume. For many people, lifestyle modifications play a crucial role in managing the symptoms of POTS and improving the quality of life.1

Does POTS ever go away?

While the complete resolution of POTS is not common, many patients experience improvements in their symptoms with proper management. Lifestyle changes, medications, and physical therapy can all play significant roles in reducing the severity of symptoms and improving overall function. According to research, some patients might see a reduction in symptoms over time, especially with consistent management strategies tailored to their specific needs.1

It is important to note, however, that for most, POTS requires ongoing management. Symptoms may wax and wane, and some individuals might experience periods of relative remission followed by flare-ups. The condition is often more manageable with adjustments in lifestyle, diet, physical activity, and, in some cases, medications.2


  1. Freeman, R., Wieling, W., Axelrod, F. B., Benditt, D. G., Benarroch, E., Biaggioni, I., Cheshire, W. P., Chelimsky, T., Cortelli, P., Gibbons, C. H., Goldstein, D. S., Hainsworth, R., Hilz, M. J., Jacob, G., Kaufmann, H., Jordan, J., Lipsitz, L. A., Levine, B. D., Low, P. A., ... Stewart, J. M. (2020). Consensus statement on the definition of orthostatic hypotension, neurally mediated syncope and the postural tachycardia syndrome. Autonomic Neuroscience: Basic and Clinical, 215, 102738. Retrieved from
  2. Raj, S. R. (2006). The Postural Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS): Pathophysiology, Diagnosis & Management. Indian Pacing and Electrophysiology Journal, 6(2), 84–99. Retrieved from
  3. Johns Hopkins Medicine. (n.d.). Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS). Retrieved from

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